- While we do not currently offer an online Bar/Bat Mitzvah training program, please check back with us in the future.
- Read about the Meaning of Bar/Bat Mitzvah
Are you interested in a Bar/Bat Mitzvah ceremony and religious education for you or your child? If you are interested in exploring the option of online Bar/Bat Mitzvah training, let’s talk more!
Our online training program will be open to those who view Judaism from a humanistic perspective and would like to study such topics as:
- What it means to be Jewish
- What it means to be human
- Decision making
- Jewish literacy
- Hebrew (decoding skills)
This will be an intensive two-year program that will involve a commitment from the Bar/Bat Mitzvah student and his/her family. Lessons will occur online, and a rabbi from OurJewishCommunity.org will join you for the service in the city of your choice.
If you are interested in learning more about this program, please contact Rabbi Baum.
OurJewishCommunity.org and its sister congregation (Congregation Beth Adam in Cincinnati) recognize the ceremony of Bar Mitzvah (for males) and Bat Mitzvah (for females) as marking the transition from childhood to adolescence. It also serves as a celebration of years of Hebrew, Judaic, and philosophic studies. The Bar/Bat Mitzvah is the occasion when a person shares the realization of hard work and study with his or her family, friends, and community. As a result, he or she affirms his or her place within the Jewish people.
The Hebrew words, “Bar Mitzvah” mean “son of the commandment.” Information about the first Bar Mitzvah in Jewish history is not available. According to rabbinical teachings, when a boy reaches the age of 13, he is required to participate in the mitzvot, or religious obligations. Historical records tell us that in Germany around the 14th century, a ceremony for the Bar Mitzvah gained significance. At that time the young adult read from the Torah and recited blessings before and after the Torah reading. The ceremony today is very similar to the practice in the Middle Ages.
In 1921, Judith Kaplan became the first Bat Mitzvah, or “daughter of the commandment.” Before Judith, girls were not allowed to have a ceremony or read from the Torah. The Bat Mitzvah ceremony is the result of the vision and courage of Judith’s father, Rabbi Mordechai Kaplan, who was the founder of Reconstructionist Judaism, a modern liberal movement within Judaism.
A Bar or Bat Mitzvah service does not change a young adult’s status. A boy or girl becomes a Bar or Bat Mitzvah with or without a ceremony. A ceremony can serve to mark the occasion.
In all aspects of OurJewishCommunity.org and Congregation Beth Adam, we draw from the rich experiences of the Jewish people, while incorporating modern ideas and concepts.
Our liturgy is an an expression of what we believe. Our liturgy strives to foster intellectual honesty, personal responsibility, and opportunity for growth. It is our hope that readers will experience a deeper sense of their moral and spiritual selves within a context of modern day Judaism.